To work within the Group of Dr Madeline Lancaster in the Cell Biology Division at the LMB within an overall programme that uses organoid systems to investigate development of the human brain. Specifically, to undertake research to investigate evolutionary genetic changes in great apes that may be mechanistically responsible for progenitor expansion in humans.
Recent work in the Lancaster lab has revealed a key difference in human cortical progenitors whereby founder stem cells delay their fate transition to enable more extensive proliferation prior to the onset of neurogenesis compared with other great apes. This difference helps explain the greatly enlarged cerebral cortex in humans. Several factors have been identified to be key for this transition, but exactly which genetic changes are responsible for delayed transition is still unknown.
This project will explore underlying genetic and cell biological mechanisms that set the human developing cortex apart. Currently, there are several hypotheses, and various methodological approaches could be used, and the project would thus benefit from independent ideas from a highly motivated individual.
• To undertake research aimed at human brain development and evolution using organoids.• To identify, develop and apply a broad range of techniques to pursue the research objectives.• To present scientific work at seminars within the laboratory and at external meetings.• To contribute to laboratory-wide discussions on developments within the field. • To draft scientific papers, and contribute to the overall preparation of research for publication.• To contribute to the LMB’s mission in the public engagement of science, and the translation of research findings into improvements in health care.• To assist in the training of PhD students and other members of the LMB.
Within the overall direction of the programme, the group, the remit of the project and in discussion with the Group Leader, you will make a significant input into determining the direction of the project within a 3-year lifespan.
To plan your own work and objectives on a 12-month basis and manage your experimental work within the project along with your Supervisor.
To work with independence to identify, develop, modify and apply the necessary techniques to achieve the goals of the project.
To introduce and apply new techniques across a wide range of disciplines and to have the creativity and initiative to develop novel approaches and methods where required.
To ensure the research is carried out in accordance with good practice and in compliance with local policies and legal requirements.
To contribute to the smooth running of the group, including the effective use of resources, training of others and taking responsibility for use of communal facilities.
To enhance your research and generic skills through a tailored development programme.
You will report to Dr Madeline Lancaster and will interact and collaborate with other Postdoctoral Scientists, Research Support staff and students, not only in your group, but also across the LMB and with external groups as necessary.
This is a 3-year training and development position for a Postdoctoral Scientist who has recently completed their doctoral studies, is moving into a new research discipline or has limited experience of key transferable skills. We support Postdoctoral Scientists with a range of formal and on-the-job training, including:• MRC training courses.• External training and personal development courses.• One-to-one training with your Supervisor and other Scientists.
You will commit to undertaking the following:• Developing and following a personal development plan.• Attending training courses.• Identifying additional training which will support you to develop your career.